Crew: Put out the Fire with Flogging Molly

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From the May 24, 2012 edition

Columbus native George Schwindt spends most of his time on the road as the drummer for Celtic punk legends Flogging Molly, but in his downtime he likes to kick it at a Crew game. He’s been a season ticket holder since he and his wife moved back from Los Angeles five years ago.

Schwindt’s worlds collide Saturday when Flogging Molly plays a concert at Crew Stadium immediately following the Crew’s match against the Chicago Fire. He’s doubly excited; not only is his band playing its biggest Columbus venue yet, but he gets to see the Crew in person, an experience that’s been all too rare while promoting Flogging Molly’s 2011 album “Speed of Darkness.”

“Last season I sat down and there was a woman in my seat,” Schwindt said. “I said, ‘Listen, you’re in my seat.’ And she said, ‘You don’t come to the damn games anyway.’ And I’m like, ‘What the f--- does that have to do with it? I paid for the damn thing!’”

Schwindt grew up on the West Side of Columbus but moved to Los Angeles in the early 1990s seeking stardom with his band Eurogression. That band broke up after about a year, so Schwindt moved to London, where he first caught the soccer bug.

“When I went to Westland High School, there was basically no such thing as soccer,” Schwindt said. “It just wasn’t anything, really.”

After a few months overseas, Schwindt returned to L.A. and started hanging out at the bar Molly Malone’s, where he became a fan and eventually a member of Flogging Molly.

The band’s frontman Dave King, a die-hard Manchester United supporter, helped fuel Schwindt’s appetite for soccer. By the time Schwindt landed back in Columbus, Crew tickets seemed like an obvious choice.

He’s convinced he won’t be the only one excited for soccer and rock Saturday.

“We feel like there are a lot of Flogging Molly fans that are probably Crew fans and just don’t know it,” Schwindt said. “And the same thing, there are probably a lot of Flogging Molly fans sitting in Crew Stadium, they just don’t realize it yet.”

Visit the Sensory Overload blog to read the full interview with Flogging Molly’s George Schwindt.